Can You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope?

If you are a mother-to-be, hearing your baby’s heartbeat for the first time is the best feeling ever. As the studies show, hearing a baby’s heartbeat creates a soothing effect on adults. So, can you hear a baby heartbeat with a stethoscope?Can You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope

Yes, you can hear a baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope. You must be in the quietest place at your home so that you can hear the small sound clearly. And the pregnancy should be 20+ weeks. The bigger the baby is, the easier it is to hear the heartbeat. 

Further, I will share some important information that you need to consider. Throughout my research, I will attempt to clear out all your how’s and what’s that relate to the topic you are seeking. 

Can You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope

When you reach a certain stage of pregnancy after the 18th or 20th week, you can hear the baby’s heartbeat at your home simply and easily by using a stethoscope. A stethoscope is a tube-like tool that you will find in any medical store. 

The device features a tube with a chest piece and earpiece for placing it on your stomach and ear. In order for the sound to reach the earpiece, it passes through a tube from the chest piece. All in all, It assists health care professionals in diagnosing patients by amplifying inaudible sounds generated by our body organs. 

Let’s see how can you hear a baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope.

Step 1: Find A Quiet Location:Can You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope1

Firstly, Look for a calm and quiet location within your home. A quiet environment will allow you to hear your baby’s heartbeat easily. 

Step 2: Lie On Smooth Surface

Secondly, the woman must be between the 18th and the 20th week pregnant. Allow her to lie down on a smooth surface or on a couch if she is relaxed and comfortable. The good news is you don’t have to visit your gynecologist again and again. You can do this all at your home with a very handy device. Can You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope1

Step 3: Look For A Smooth Yet Hard Spot On Belly

Gently feel your stomach area. Look for the spot which is hard yet smooth. That’s probably the back of your baby from where you will be able to hear. It’s usually on the left side of the uterus. The back of the baby is the closest way through where you can hear the beat. 

Step 4: Place The Tube On The Stomach Area

Then, grab a stethoscope tube and place the chest piece on your stomach area where you found the baby’s back. Push it gently enough so you are as close as possible to the baby. Be very careful. You don’t have to be uncomfortable while pushing the chest piece into your stomach. 

Step 5: Place The Earpiece In Your EarCan You Hear Baby Heartbeat With Stethoscope3

Lastly, place the earpiece area into your ear and try hearing the small ticking sound of your baby’s heartbeat. If you can’t hear it then don’t panic, try finding another spot. Eventually, you will be able to find the right spot and catch the heartbeat. 

Precautions For Hearing Baby’s Heartbeat at home

Be Careful With The Position:

The first and foremost important thing to keep in mind is that the pregnant woman should be in the right position. She may not move here and there while hearing the baby’s heartbeat. The movement may make the process hard, and it might be impossible to hear. 

Do Not Push The Stethoscope Hard 

While you are using the stethoscope, you don’t have to push the chest piece so hard on your stomach. It can hit the infant baby, which is harmful. Just push it gently and slowly to pick up the sound of the fetal heartbeats. 

Didn’t hear the heartbeat? Here is what to do

In the event of not finding a heartbeat using a device, you may feel anxious and even nervous. This is especially common if a person has already heard the heartbeat in a doctor’s office. 

On the other hand, your baby’s position can make it difficult to hear the heartbeats. Or you are not far enough in your pregnancy to observe your baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope. In this case, you have to wait for some more weeks and then try again.

Besides, you can also try out some tips given down below:

Stay Calm: 

You have to remain calm and relaxed. One should keep in his mind that detecting a heartbeat can be challenging, even when the infant baby is healthy. There is nothing wrong if you aren’t able to hear the heartbeat with a stethoscope.

Try Different Places On Your Stomach.

In case you are unable to catch the sound of the heartbeat, try searching for other spots on the stomach. Move the chest piece tube up and down and push the tube gently to find the right place. Eventually, you will hear the small clock ticking sound from your baby’s heart once you are in the right spot.

Use Fetal Doppler

Using a fetal Doppler is recommended. However, It should only be used after consulting your healthcare provider or your gynecologist. In 12 to 14 weeks of pregnancy, you can hear the heartbeat of your unborn child with a Doppler device. I’m glad that you won’t have to wait until you’re 18 to 20 weeks pregnant. 

Symptoms of heartbeat in pregnancy

Having a feeling like a pulse in the stomach can make pregnant women anxious. While it may seem like it is your baby’s heartbeat, it is simply the pulse in your abdominal aorta. What are some symptoms of a heartbeat? Let’s see

  • Scientists have discovered that a pregnant woman’s blood circulation and movement around her body are greatly increased as she becomes pregnant. 
  • Further, the pregnant woman may also experience a couple of things during her mid-pregnancy. For instance, a rapid heartbeat is a common thing. You don’t have to be worried or anxious, it’s normal.

Symptoms To Be Aware Of:

Pregnancy symptoms have a great impact on psychosocial personality. During pregnancy, there are a few symptoms that you should be aware of so that you can have extra care on those days. 

Sense of unsteadiness.

Pregnant women used to report that they feel dizziness and nausea, which is a common symptom you may feel during your mid-pregnancy. You may remain calm and stress-free during those days.

Sweating and easily tired.

The other common symptom is sweating and easily tired and fatigued. It is recommended to have much rest and less work, especially during the 15th to 20th week. 

Burning sensation in the chest.

Patients often complain of having a burning sensation in the chest. It is advised that they consult their doctor for the proper medication or any female trainer expert for proper health care. 

Fast beating or pounding heart. 

Fast beating is normally the cause of serious anxiety, and it is perhaps the common thing in mid-pregnancy. In order to remain calm and relaxed, the patient must maintain a calm mind.

Feeling of anxiety or discomfort.

It is important to note that the pregnant woman may not be in any type of stress or anxiety. This could affect the infant’s health. Moreover, the woman should remain comfortable and relaxed. Any type of task which causes discomfort or pain can be harmful to the unborn baby or the mother.

Uneasiness in the chest.

Chest pain may result from serious morning sickness. Further, during pregnancy, a repeated irritation of the throat by vomit may cause chest pain. Sleepless nights are also normal during pregnancy when your fetus is growing, and may also contribute to uneasiness in the chest. 

Tips to get the baby heartbeat sound clearer and faster:

When you listen to your child’s heartbeat with a stethoscope, it is impossible for you to notice it as early as you would by using ultrasound or fetal Doppler. Here are some tips to get the results easily.

We must keep in mind that not every stethoscope tool is designed the same. It is essential that you read all the descriptions and methods before you buy. Make sure to buy the right device for yourself that works efficiently.

Place Stethoscope Close To The Baby:

Back is the easiest spot from where you can have access and the best way to be as close as possible to the baby’s heartbeats.

The bigger the surface, the easier it is to hear:

When the baby is bigger, you have a bigger surface to work with. So probably it’s much easier to find the right spot to catch the heartbeat. Moreover, you will also be able to hear a loud enough sound. 

You must be in between 20+ weeks of pregnancy:

When the baby’s tiny, meanwhile 10 to 12 weeks, the surface of your stomach is very small. Therefore, it’s hard to catch the exact spot and baby’s heartbeat. You might be confused by hearing no sound at all. Hence, that’s the reason why you must be 19th weeks pregnant to use a stethoscope. 

Make Sure You Are Using A Cleaned Stethoscope:

A well-cleaned stethoscope has a greater chance of listening to the baby’s heartbeat. 

Key Take-aways:

  • A baby’s heartbeat can often be detected between weeks 18 and 20 using a stethoscope.
  • To get the best sound and clarity, you need a good stethoscope. Which is comfortable to carry and not so heavy. 
  • Besides, it is important to consider the tube’s length, as it matters a lot. A longer tube means the sound can reach the earpiece faster.
  • Moving the chest piece up and down is required to hear the heartbeat if it does not come instantly.
  • The right and effective tool is always required for better function. Make sure to buy a stethoscope of fine quality, which will help the sound to travel fast into your ear. 


Photo of author

Muhammad Bilal Qayyum

MBBS from Taishan Medical University and currently working in Bahawal Victoria Hospital. The blog is a great resource for both novices and experienced users when it comes to stethoscopes. As I studied and practiced, I evaluated various models on the market, which led me to become an expert in stethoscopes.

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